REPORT: Billy Donovan is “Starting Fresh” with the Coaching Staff (UPDATE: Bulls Confirm Four Coaches Let Go) | Bleacher Nation

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REPORT: Billy Donovan is “Starting Fresh” with the Coaching Staff (UPDATE: Bulls Confirm Four Coaches Let Go)

Chicago Bulls

Billy Donovan is the captain now, and he’s wasting no time making that known.

On this first day of the NBA offseason, the Bulls new head coach is reportedly moving on from the team’s current assistant coaching staff. According to NBC Sports Chicago’s K.C. Johnson, Donovan is calling the current Bulls assistants Monday morning to tell them he’s “starting fresh.”

The announcement shouldn’t come as too big of a surprise, especially considering the fact that new head coaches normally like to build their own staff. However, considering that this is the Bulls we’re talking about, any change can be rather eye-popping (Michael: Heck, it’s even crazier that Jerry Reinsdorf is doing this the same day he fired Rick Renteria as manager of the Chicago White Sox). The news means that the organization is prepared to eat even more cash, as several of the Bulls current assistants are still under contract. Specifically, we know that Chris Fleming and Roy Rogers were both on multi-year deals, while Karnisovas picked up the contract option on assistant Nate Loenser earlier this offseason.

Johnson named Rogers, Loenser, and Dean Cooper as victims of Donovan’s staff changes, with Fleming as the notable omission. Not only do we know that Karnisovas has a prior relationship with Fleming, but the lead assistant coach has also drawn plenty of respect in league circles. Most recently, he interviewed for both the Bulls and New York Knicks head coach vacancy. The guy is supposedly an offensive guru who didn’t get a chance to shine last season, and as it seems he’s an up-and-coming head coach candidate, it would be a totally reasonable move to keep him on board.

Now, we’ll have to keep a close eye on whom Donovan brings aboard. And, listen, I know these sorts of hires may not usually feel very exciting, but keep in mind that these assistants can help establish the culture of an organization, which often permeates throughout the league. Donovan has plenty of solid connections in the NBA, so the names added to the Bulls bench could provide yet another much-needed boost for this franchise. The name to keep a close eye on now is former-NBA player and head coach Maurice Cheeks, who served on Donovan’s staff each season he was in Oklahoma City.

UPDATE (Michael): The Bulls have now confirmed the news. Four coaches – Karen Stack Umlauf, Dean Cooper, Nate Loenser, and Roy Rogers – are out, but Chris Fleming is back:



Author: Elias Schuster

Elias Schuster is a writer for Bleacher Nation and a human being. You can follow him on Twitter @Schuster_Elias.